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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Liz McMillan, Esmeralda Swartz, Hovhannes Avoyan, Elizabeth White, Adrian Bridgwater

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Ovarian Cancer Survivor Andrea Sloan Seeks Compassionate Use Exemption From BioMarin to Save Her Life

Change.org Petition Urges BioMarin to Grant Sloan a Compassionate Use Exemption

AUSTIN, TX -- (Marketwired) -- 08/29/13 -- Andrea Sloan, a seven-year survivor of Stage 3c ovarian cancer, is seeking a compassionate use exemption from pharmaceutical company BioMarin to save her life. Sloan is scheduled to start treatment at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston on Sept. 5 and has her heart set on having the breakthrough drug BMN 673 administered to her then. A robust grassroots campaign in support of Sloan has emerged on social media and Change.org in an effort to get an affirmative response from BioMarin.

"BioMarin's BMN 673 offers me the best chance at a long life," said Sloan. "My doctors and the FDA agree that I am an excellent candidate for this drug and meet the criteria for compassionate use exemption. However, BioMarin's lack of a policy on compassionate use is preventing me from gaining access to the drug I need to save my life. I respectfully implore them to reconsider and make the ethical decision to help me."

Sloan has endured two full rounds of chemo, five surgeries and a stem cell transplant. While her cancer remains responsive to treatment, her bone marrow can no longer tolerate traditional therapies. Her world-class oncology team at MD Anderson believes BioMarin's PARP inhibitor BMN 673, which is currently in a clinical trial, is the best option for her BRCA1 mutation of ovarian cancer.

Unfortunately, Sloan hit a barrier in gaining access to the drug. Enrollment for the ovarian arm of the study is full and the portion of the trial that is entering phase III is only open to BRCA1 patients with breast cancer, not ovarian. Therefore, Sloan is left with compassionate use exemption as her only option to access the drug she needs to fight her cancer. Based on FDA requirements, Sloan qualifies for compassionate use exemption. Data emerging from the BMN 673 study shows it is a safe and effective treatment option for patients with Sloan's exact cancer type. The best-in-class therapy is designed to hurt the tumor without other side effects making it an optimum treatment for Sloan.

Despite best efforts to contact BioMarin, the company has not been cooperative, merely sighting their lack of a policy on the issue. Sloan, the executive director of a non-profit that advocates for survivors of domestic violence and abuse, now finds herself forced to publicly advocate for herself in a last chance effort to save her life. Sloan is committed to advocating for meaningful reform on this topic and hopes BioMarin will lead by example in starting a national dialogue.

For people interested in supporting Sloan, sign the petition on Change.org urging BioMarin to grant her a compassionate use exemption and follow her on Twitter at @andi_sloan.

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Media Contact for Andrea Sloan:
Rae Bazzarre
The MACH 1 Group
(202) 320-5134
Email Contact

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